[Gen 37:3-4, 12-13, 17b-28a / Ps 105:16-17, 18-19, 20-21 / Mat 21:33-43, 45-46]
Before I wish you a Happy St. Patrick’s Day, do you have your green on? If not, you are subject to be pinched! You forgot to put it on? Do not worry, God will not let you be pinched because God is always providential.
There is a beautiful Spanish proverb that says “No hay un mal que por un bien no venga.” It means “nothing bad happens without a good reason.” This is so true. We can see it in today’s first reading, the story of Joseph. He should have been killed because his brothers were so jealous of him, but God’s providential care saved him. He was sold as a slave, but he became a VIP in the Pharaoh’s royal court. He eventually saved his family from famine. In this story we can appreciate God’s mercy, providence, power, and mystery.
In terms of theme the Gospel passage from Mathew is very similar to the first reading taken from the Book of Genesis. Jesus is the Beloved Son of the Father sent to his people and who, out of envy, was killed by the “tenants of the vineyard”. He was betrayed by his own people. Judas sold him for 30 pieces of silver; Peter denied Him. Yet, He gave his life to save us. He became “The most important stone which the builders rejected” as worthless. His death and resurrection are the foundation of our faith, the source of our salvation.
Through these two readings we learn that God in his mystery, power, mercy, love and providence can bring greater good out of the most tragic or painful suffering experience for anyone who trusts God and places his or her faith in Him. As we journey through this Lenten season with the intersession of St. Patrick, let us ask God to increase our faith that in every situation of our lives we may see and trust God’s mercy, love, and providence.